Know your objective. Make sure you have a plan for what you hope to achieve with your Twitter account. Everything you do – when you send your tweets, the tone of your messages, the people you follow, and so forth – should all be in alignment with the goals of your business.
Send the “Perfect Tweet.” Make every tweet count, by including some sort of call-to-action, and increasing readability by using capitals in the right place and including only a few, widely-understood abbreviations.
Format for the most retweets. Research shows you are most likely to be retweeted if you keep your tweets short (71-100 characters seems to be the sweet spot for retweets since it leaves room for RT, @username and a comment); include a link (remembering to shorten it – Bit.ly links get the most retweets); include relevant hashtags that are relevant; and don’t be afraid to ask for the retweet – tweets that do are more likely to be shared. And when you do get a retweet – make sure you thank the folks who shared your message.
Engage industry influencers. Twitter is a useful tool for developing relationships with influencers in your industry. Use mentions to prompt influencers to engage with you – and then respond if they do. Asking insightful questions is good way to get people to engage with you, too.
Retweet only relevant content to your audience, including your take on popular trends.
Don’t forget about nights and weekends. Twitter is a 24/7 thing, so go ahead and tweet whenever inspiration strikes. Want to give yourself a few days off? Go ahead and schedule tweets to be sent out automatically so that your startup remains top of mind among your followers.
Be Nice. While Twitter is not without its dark side, statistics show that the word “please” consistently ranks high among the 20 most popular words in retweets. So be polite and you’ll be rewarded.
Follow your following. Not only is it good Twitter etiquette, but in social networking, as in most everything in life, you always gain more information from “listening” than from talking.
Be mindful of oversharing. While it is good to be as transparent as your business allows, remember that the Twitter feed for your new business is not the same as a personal account. Keep the conversation friendly and humorous – but still always professional.
Track your results. Use data to determine what works and adjust your efforts appropriately. Decide early on how you will define ROI and then track your progress at regular intervals.
Bryan Janeczko – Founder, Wicked Start Bryan has successfully launched multiple startups. His latest venture, Wicked Start, provides tools to plan, fund, and launch a new business. Also author of WickedStart: Guide to Starting a New Venture with Passion and Purpose, Bryan is committed to helping small businesses grow and succeed. www.wickedstart.com | Facebook | @WickedStart | LinkedIn | More from Bryan